The Sun seemed to have been engulfed by dark clouds as the club witnessed the departure of club legends Xavi Hernandez and Andres Iniesta. The night loomed large over the towering stands of Camp Nou as FC Barcelona lost two of their most valuable gems, the midfield maestros of the golden generation. It seemed almost improbable to replace the legacy of such greats and the club found itself in a situation of turmoil as these were huge boots to fill. The genetic composition of the club boasted of players who defined and redefined the style of playing football, making it look like child’s play, with such ease of effort that it seemed that they were toying around with the ball. These were big boots to fill and the legacy of these two players seemed only to be embedded in the hearts of the fans. Well all was not lost as on the 8th of March 2018, the club saw a genetic mutation taking place, the Sun rose again showering its resplendent rays on the hallowed turf of the Nou. A young, talented and a promising midfielder who answered to the name of Arthur Melo joined the club, giving the fans a new ray of hope.
The Cruyffian ideology to receive, retain, spot, pass and repeat was clearly visible in the playing style of the young lad. Club legend and the current Technical Director Eric Abidal made no mistake of getting a contract signed from the newly crowned Brazilian League’s Upcoming Player of The Year. He started playing football with his childhood club Goiás and joined Grêmio shortly after being spotted by one of their scouts. By 2017, Arthur became a club regular after his impressive display against Guaraní winning the Man of The Match award by completing all of his attempted 40 passes. He is since known for his passing accuracy, averaging over 94% every game.
Arthur’s main strength lies deep in his cerebral cortex: the ability of being calm and composed in any situation. We have often seen his command over the ball even against the mightiest of players in competitions like the Champions League. His ability of not getting intimidated complemented by his overall footballing skill makes him one of the finest potential in world football. His competence of retaining the ball like Xavi and finding the smallest pockets of space like Iniesta make him reminicent of both the geniuses. His ability to surprise the opponent with his packed skill set as well as his ability to shoot the ball with power from acute angles and distances make him even more special. The basic Blaugrana ideology of being comfortable with the football is throughly embraced by the prodigy as he gently caresses the ball like his own child and guides it to its required path. His expertise in creativity is profound.
Being only 22, there is a lot to come from the young midfielder as we see him shape his career at the club. He truly has huge boots to fill but so far, he is doing a great job. As famously quoted by the Barca Ball, for now let’s,” Enjoy Arthur, Enjoy Barça.”